Bond Rating Companies Reaffirm Village's Bond Ratings

Bond Rating Companies Reaffirm Village's Bond Ratings

The Village of Orland Park has received word from its bond rating companies that the village's ratings have been reaffirmed and remain consistent despite the current state of the national economy.

Standard & Poor's reaffirmed Orland Park's AA+ rating and Moody's Investors Service reaffirmed the village's Aa2 rating.

Investors and financial market professionals look to these agencies for objective and credible ratings when making business decisions.

"In light of the fact that many communities are struggling, and Orland Park too has tightened its belt, it's encouraging to have both Moody's and Standard & Poor's show such confidence in Orland Park," said Orland Park Mayor Dan McLaughlin.

In its April, 2009 newsletter, Moody's wrote, "Moody's has assigned a negative outlook to the U.S. local government tax-backed and related ratings sector. This is the first time we have assigned an outlook to this extremely large and diverse sector. This negative outlook reflects the significant fiscal challenges local governments face as a result of the housing market collapse, dislocations in the financial markets, and a recession that is broader and deeper than any recent downturn."

"Having both companies maintain Orland Park's high rating, despite their announced negative outlooks for local government, is a testament to the village's great staff and the team work between the Village Board and administration to solve problems and work to keep Orland Park fiscally sound," McLaughlin added.

Echoing the mayor's comments, Orland Park Trustee Ed Schussler, who chairs the village's Finance Committee, said, "During these difficult economic times, our Village Board and staff have worked hard to control our expenditures and maintain appropriate fund balances. The recent ratings from Moody's and Standard & Poor's confirm the success of our efforts."

In the United States, there are seven bond rating agencies that have received the Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organization (NRSRO) designation, and are overseen by the Securities and Exchange Commission in how they assign credit ratings. Standard & Poor's and Moody's are the best known and most influential credit rating agencies.

The mayor noted that there is another side to the rating. "It tells the business community that Orland Park is a stable place in a time of economic uncertainty. Not only are we holding our own, but the years of stable, strong management pay off in these tougher times," McLaughlin said.

"The higher the bond rating, the easier it is for municipalities to issue debt at lower interest rates and attract more potential buyers as buyers feel the risk of default is lessened because of the sound financial management practices that must be in place in order to get a higher rating," explained Finance Director Annmarie Mampe.

Mampe added, "Commercial enterprises are attracted to a municipality with a higher rating as sound financial management should equate to lower property tax levies. A high rating tells the general public that Orland Park is doing things right --- that Orland Park is a financially sound municipality that spends its tax payer dollars wisely."

Schussler added, "A fiscally healthy village is important in attracting new businesses and maintaining a quality environment for our residents."